Piece of Deutsche Bank drops off, causing a partial work stop

By Julie Shapiro

A falling chunk of concrete stopped work in part of the Deutsche Bank building Wednesday morning.

The piece of concrete, measuring 3 feet by 3 feet by 10 inches, fell from the second story of the building into a pit on the site as workers were removing the building’s facade, according to the city Dept. of Buildings and the Lower Manhattan Development Corp., which owns the building.

No one was hurt, but D.O.B. issued a violation to contractor Bovis Lend Lease for failure to safeguard public and property, said Tony Sclafani, D.O.B. spokesperson.

It is unclear why the piece of concrete fell. It landed near the base of the tower crane on the north side of the site, in an area that is fenced off as a protective measure, said John De Libero, spokesperson for L.M.D.C. Sclafani confirmed that the concrete fell in a place “workers are not typically gathered.”

D.O.B. only stopped work on the north side of the site. Facade removal there cannot resume until the site safety manager prepares a report and engineers conduct a survey of the building to look for similarly dangerous conditions, Sclafani said.

De Libero said Bovis would propose safety enhancements to D.O.B. on Thursday. He was not sure when work on the north side of the site would restart, but he said the project was still adhering to its most recent schedule.

The Deutsche Bank building, contaminated on 9/11, is being cleaned so it can be demolished. Though the project has been delayed many times, demolition is supposed to start at the beginning of August and finish six months later. The building has been under close regulatory scrutiny since a 2007 fire in the building killed two firefighters.